“Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares” by David Levithan & Rachel Cohn | Book Review

Book Review | Rating – 3/5 | Genre – Young Adult / Romance

This has been a book I’ve had for a good while now, having bought the book during a phase in my life when I had just discovered David Levithan as an author. It was one of those books that I remember reading very enthusiastically at the time, with that being said, I wanted to give this book another read. As I said in my last review (see that one here), I’m now commuting to London on the train, so I’ve got a lot more time to read, so I thought i’d give this book another read to see if it lives up to the memory I had from the first read. Heres how that went…

I’ve left some clues for you. If you want them, turn the page. If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.
At the urge of her lucky-in-love brother, sixteen-year-old Lily has left a red notebook full of dares on her favourite bookshop shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept. Curious, snarky Dash isn’t one to back down from a challenge – and the Book of Dares is the perfect distraction he’s been looking for.

As they send each other on a scavenger hunt across Manhattan, they’re falling for each other on paper. But finding out if their real selves share their on-page chemistry could be their biggest dare yet…. (check it out here)

What did I think?

When I chose this book to re-read, I had fond memories of the first time I read it. If I remember correctly, I was a teenager at the time, finding myself relating to the troubles of the two teens that make up our protagonists in the book. So, I was fairly eager to give this book a re-read a good ten years later, seeing how my twenty-seven year old brain would enjoy this book.

What I did find was that whatever feelings I had when I first read the book definitely didn’t come back to the surface during this read through. I will start off with the positives; having found that it was a super easy read, making the journey back and forth from London fairly easy to bare. It was also written well enough to easily picture the two characters as real people.

Then came the problems… As easy as it was to picture the characters, I soon found myself not wanting to know the characters. They were both so whiny and entitled; when I was younger, reading this book for the first time, this was something that I clearly related to. However, now that I’m older I can see that these were traits that shouldn’t be encouraged or enjoyed.

Reasons to read Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares…

  • Easy to read: As I’ve mentioned, the book was super easy to read. The plot was easy to follow without being entirely predictable. It was also quite nice seeing the differences between the two characters and their views of the world.
  • Descriptive Characters: Again, it was easy to picture both of the characters as real people. Yes, they were whiny and pretentious, but it was very relatable to what myself and some of my friends were like when we were at school reading about these two characters.

At the end of the day…

I’m most likely not going to read this book again. It was a nice stroll down memory lane, exploring the stories I used to enjoy when I was younger. But it wasn’t long until I realised that these are the types of books that are very much geared towards people of a specific age.

Yes, the characters were super relatable, for people of their age. As well as an easy and fairly enjoyable read. However, there were far too many moments that I found myself cringing at some of the things Dash or Lily would say, wishing that they’d see sense and learn they weren’t as all-knowing as they liked to act.


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